Ever since Alexandra Clark fell in love with chocolate while working at a local ice cream parlor, she knew that a life of confectionary was her destiny. She’s traveled the world learning about the industry – graduating from Michigan State University’s Hospitality and Food Science program, studying agricultural economics of chocolate in New Zealand, attending French pastry school in Chicago, and obtaining a pastry certification from the culinary program at Schoolcraft College in Michigan.

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Margaret Anglin, owner of Mr. Wireman, an electrical company, had been in business for 15 years before she came to the Florida Women’s Business Center.  The business was providing a livable income, Anglin was comfortable, but the business was not growing and was not moving forward.  In addition, she did not have a business or strategic plan, therefore she did not know whether there was a potential for growth nor how to make it happen. 
 

Doing business with the government isn’t easy. In fact, it’s challenging on multiple levels, especially for small businesses. Jerry Bennett, CEO of Privateer IT, learned that when his bids for government contracts received no response whatsoever. Fortunately for Jerry, he found the Florida SBDC at UCF in Brevard County and was able to take advantage of the FSBDC’s Government Contracting Services.

When John Purland decided to depart his job as a college professor and pursue entrepreneurship, he brought with him years of business academia experience and a passion to succeed in the small business arena.
 
Founded in 2003, M. R. Crafts, Inc. is wholly owned by the service disabled veteran who is also a Florida-licensed general and roofing contractor, holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA), and has collegiate-experience as a Professor in the school of business.
 
Small business owner Diana Pierre-Louis initially learned of the hidden jewels of Haiti – untouched areas, a beautiful culture, and warm, friendly people from listening to stories told by her husband and country-native, Endy.  After setting eyes on the country which is often portrayed as impoverished, the then-digital marketing specialist was determined to share all she could about the beauty of the country where her husband was born and raised.  "All I wanted to do was show people the beauty of what I experienced; now it has grown to be much more than I could've ever imagined.”

Sheri Chaney Jones wanted to help the social sector improve community services on issues ranging from hunger to reducing poverty. Through an SBA loan program and resource partners, she was able to realize this passion by creating her business, Measurement Resources, to evaluate and improve government and nonprofit programs.  

“The effectiveness of an initiative can’t be measure monetarily,” Jones said. “I measure the social outcome of an initiative to ensure government and nonprofit resources help as many people as possible.”

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